SPEAKERS

SPEAKERS

Versha Banerji MD FRCPC

Associate Professor
University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, MB

Dr. Versha Banerji  obtained her MD and residency training in Internal Medicine and Hematology at the University of Manitoba. She then completed a post-doctoral fellowship in translational research at the Harvard Cancer Centre/ Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Broad Institute of MIT. She is a Senior Scientist at the CancerCare Manitoba Research Institute, Associate Professor at the University of Manitoba, and a Clinician-Scientist at CancerCare Manitoba. She Co-leads the CLL clinic and is involved in several clinical trials and population-based treatment studies. As Co-chair of the CLL Research Program she manages a multi-disciplinary research team in clinical, fundamental and translational research. Her own laboratory is evaluating mitochondrial bioenergetics and function as a measure of cancer cell metabolism.

Nanette Cox-Kennett, BsCN, MN, NP
Cross Cancer Institute
Edmonton, AB

Nan Cox-Kennett has been an oncology nurse for several decades working at the bedside as a staff nurse, patient educator, staff educator and completed her MN in 2004 at the University of Alberta. Since 2005, Nan is Nurse Practitioner for the Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplant Program at the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton Alberta providing outpatient care to persons receiving autologous/allogeneic bone marrow transplant or diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Through the years, Nan has been recognized as a leader in oncology nursing having received the Myeloma Canada Marion State Nursing Award for Leadership and Excellence in Patient Care, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Excellence in Patient Advocacy Award, and a nomination for the CANO Oncology Nurse of the Year. Nan is passionate about education and endeavors to make complicated things understandable.

Nicole Crisp, RN, BScN, MN, NP-Adult

Nurse Practitioner
Cross Cancer Institute
Edmonton, AB

Nicole Crisp is a nurse practitioner working in malignant hematology at the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton, Canada, with experience in acute leukemia, myelodysplasia, lymphoma, and stem cell transplantation over the past sixteen years. She spent several years working internationally in New Zealand and the UK, with dedicated training from the Royal Marsden School of Cancer Nursing. Both her bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in nursing were earned at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Alberta. She is an advocate and member of the International Nurse Leadership Board for the Myelodysplastic Syndromes Foundation. She is also co-investigator on multiple clinical trials within the department of Medical Oncology at the Cross Cancer Institute, including a trial exploring the impact of allogeneic stem cell transplantation on quality of life in long-term follow up patients. Nicole has several published articles on a selection of interests,  including the impact of home chemotherapy programs, quality of life in patients with hematologic malignancies, and the evidence for (and against) medical cannabinoids in oncology.

Professor Andrew Davies, BSc (Hons), BM (Hons), FRCP, PhD

Professor of Haematological Oncology
Consultant in Medical Oncology
Cancer Sciences Unit, Faculty of Medicine
University Hospital Southampton
Southampton, UK

Andrew Davies is a Professor in Haematological Oncology and Consultant Medical Oncologist in the Cancer Sciences Unit in the Faculty of Medicine, University Hospital Southampton, United Kingdom.  He was awarded honours in medicine, and also gained a first-class Bachelor of Science degree in Molecular Biology from the University of Southampton. He went on to train in Medical Oncology at St Bartholomew’s Hospital in London, and as a Cancer Research UK clinical fellow undertook a PhD examining the molecular mechanisms underlying transformation of follicular lymphoma to more aggressive histological sub-types.

Professor Davies specialises in the treatment of malignant lymphoma and the use of high-dose chemotherapy. He has a particular interest in the investigation of monoclonal antibody-containing therapies applied to lymphoma and also in the translation of biomarkers and novel therapies to the clinical arena.  He has extensive experience in early phase trials, including leading several first in man lymphoma studies. He is the former Chair of the UK National Cancer Research Institute High Grade Lymphoma Study Group and Director of Cancer Research UK/National Institute of Health Research Southampton Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre. He is also the Wessex regional lead for cancers in Teenagers and Young Adults.

Tristin Hamilton, BScN, MN, NP

Cross Cancer Institute
Research Coordinator – University of Alberta
Edmonton, AB

Tristin Hamilton has been working in oncology since March 2020, following completion of her MN in 2019 at Athabasca University. She has a BA in Political Science from the University of Alberta, and is an Army veteran of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), having served as a Medic until 2012. She also a research coordinator with Heroes in Mind, Advocacy and Research Consortium (HiMARC) at the University of Alberta, focused on treating moral injury and PTSD in military and essential service provider populations.

Since joining Alberta Cancer Care, Tristin has helped implement the first Community Cancer Clinic where care is provided entirely via telehealth in Lloydminster, AB. Tristin was a panel member of the CANO 2021 symposia and NACIC 2021 conference, discussing optimization of virtual care delivery for patients and caregivers. She has a great passion for empowering patients and staff through enhanced education, communication, and teamwork.

Steven Horwitz, MD

Member at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Attending Physician at Memorial Hospital
New York, NY

New York, NY

Dr. Steven Horwitz is an Attending Physician in the Department of Medicine at Memorial Hospital for Cancer and Allied Diseases and a Member in Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. He earned his medical degree at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at the University of Rochester/Strong Memorial Hospital, and then completed a fellowship in medical oncology at Stanford University Medical Center.

Much of his current research is dedicated to investigating targeted or immunotherapeutic approaches to try to identify better, and often less toxic treatments for individuals with T‐cell lymphomas. His research also focuses on better understanding mechanisms of response and resistance to novel drugs in T‐cell lymphoma to help provide individualized treatments in the future.

Dr. Horwitz participates in several national, and international committees and consortiums dedicated to the understanding and advancement of treatment for T‐cell lymphoma. Since 2017 he has been the Chair of the NCCN panel on Guidelines for Treatment of T‐Cell/Primary Cutaneous B‐Cell Lymphomas.

Manali Kamdar, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine
University of Colorado School of Medicine
Aurora, CO

Dr. Kamdar obtained her medical degree from Mumbai, India, and subsequently completed a residency in Internal Medicine and a fellowship in Hematology and Oncology at the East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. She then completed another fellowship in lymphoid malignancies and bone marrow transplantation at Stanford University.
Currently, Dr. Kamdar is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and serve as the Clinical Director of the lymphoma program. Her clinical and research interests include B-cell lymphomas, particularly refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, mantle cell
lymphomas, and other indolent lymphomas. In addition to seeing patients with
lymphoma in clinic, Dr. Kamdar’s research involves conducting clinical trials of novel drugs, including immunotherapy and combinations in these diseases.

Adam Kittai, MD
Assistant Professor
Division of Hematology
Ohio State University
Columbus, Ohio

Dr. Kittai is a clinical assistant professor in the Division of Hematology at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. He is a clinical investigator with a focus on chronic lymphocytic leukemia and Richter’s Syndrome, specifically developing clinical trials for patients with these diseases. Dr. Kittai’s research focus is on bringing cellular therapies to patients with high-risk disease. Furthermore, Dr. Kittai is exploring what prognostic features of chronic lymphocytic leukemia are still relevant in the era of targeted therapies.

John Kuruvilla, MD, FRCPC
Associate Professor of Medicine
University of Toronto
Clinician Investigator, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre
Toronto, ON

 

Dr. John Kuruvilla is an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto and a Clinical Investigator in the Division of Medical Oncology and Hematology at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre in Toronto. He is a hematologist and member of the Lymphoma and the Autologous Blood and Marrow Transplant programs at Princess Margaret. His research interest is the development of novel therapeutics in lymphoid malignancies and incorporating translational research into clinical trials. He is the Lymphoma Co-Chair for the Canadian Cancer Trials Group (CCTG) as well as the Chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of Lymphoma Canada.

Hira Mian, MD, MSc, FRCPC

Assistant Professor, Oncology
McMaster University
Hematologist

Juravinski Cancer Centre 
Hamilton, ON 

Dr. Hira Mian, MD, MSc, FRCPC is a hematologist specializing in plasma cell disorders at the Juravinski Cancer Centre in Hamilton, Ontario. She is an assistant professor in the Department of Oncology at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada. Dr. Mian’s research interests include health services and outcomes and care of older adults and frailty in multiple myeloma. Dr. Mian is an active clinical investigator in the Canadian Myeloma Research Group and the Canadian Cancer Trials Group and Board Member of Myeloma Canada.

Dr. Lynne Nakashima, BSc(Pharm), Pharm.D.

Senior Director, Provincial Pharmacy
Pharmacy Residency Program Director
BC Cancer Agency
Vancouver, BC

Dr. Lynne Nakashima received her BSc (Pharm) from the University of British Columbia (UBC) and her Pharm.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  She was awarded a fellowship in the Canadian Association of Pharmacy in Oncology (CAPhO) in 2016.  She is currently the Senior Director, Provincial Pharmacy and the Pharmacy Residency Program Director for BC Cancer.  Dr. Nakashima also holds a clinical appointment at the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences at UBC.

Dr. Nakashima is currently responsible for the provincial oncology medication management, supporting the Systemic Therapy drug budgeting, formulary and negotiation processes as well as providing pharmacy leadership across the organization.  She is the lead Pharmacist representing BC Cancer on the Canadian Association of Provincial Cancer Agencies (CAPCA) Drug Supplies Disruptions Team, a national committee that works together to mitigate drug shortages.  With her team at BC Cancer, she coordinates oncology drug shortages within the province, including developing mitigation strategies, coordinating communication and managing inventory.

Noopur Raje, MD

Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School
Director, Center for Multiple Myeloma
Massachusetts General Hospital
Boston, Massachusetts

Dr. Noopur Raje received her medical degree from B.J. Medical College, Pune University, India. She has trained in internal medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and has completed a fellowship in hematology and medical oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston. Dr. Raje has a joint faculty appointment at MGH and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. She is a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and is the director of the Multiple Myeloma Program, Medical Oncology, at MGH. As a hematologist/oncologist at MGH, Dr. Raje’s primary focus is in multiple myeloma and related research. Her laboratory focuses on bone biology and the development of novel therapeutics for multiple myeloma, as well as identifying and validating novel targets and translating them into clinical trials.

Dr. Raje is a member of the American Medical Association, America Society of Hematology, American Society of Clinical Oncology, and American Association of Cancer Research, she is also an ad hoc reviewer for several journals including Blood, Clinical Cancer Research, Leukemia, and the American Journal of Hematology. Dr. Raje is the recipient of several awards and has published extensively in the field of multiple myeloma research. Her hope is to continue pursing laboratory and clinical research in the area of multiple myeloma with the goal of translating her efforts to the improvement of patients’ lives.

Deepa Sampath, MD

Associate Professor 
Department of Hematopoietic Biology & Malignancy
Department of Leukemia
University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center
Houston, TX

Dr. Sampath is an Associate Professor in the Department of Hematopoietic Biology and Malignancy and the Department of Leukemia at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (MDACC) in Houston, Texas, with a focus on translational research in hematological malignancies. She graduated with a PHD from the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas and trained as a post-doctoral fellow at MDACC. She became a tenured Associate Professor at The Ohio State University where she served as the Basic Science Lead for CLL before being recruited to MDACC in 2020. Dr. Sampath’s focus is on the role of epigenetic and mutant oncogenic transcription factors in the facilitating resistance in CLL and AML. A major focus of her laboratory is to devise novel therapeutics to overcome tumor resistance, which is supported by grants from the NIH, LLS and the MDACC CLL moonshot program.

Douglas Stewart, MD, FRCPC
Professor Departments of Oncology and Medicine
University of Calgary
Calgary, AB

 

Dr. Doug Stewart obtained his medical degree from the University of Alberta in 1987, completed Internal Medicine and Medical Oncology Residencies at the University of Ottawa, and then a Fellowship in Bone Marrow Transplantation and Lymphoma Management at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha.  Since July 1994, Dr. Stewart has been a member of the BMT Program, Breast and Hematology tumor groups at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre, and has attained the rank of Professor Emeritus in the Department of Oncology at the University of Calgary.  Administratively, he is the current Senior Medical Director of the Cancer Strategic Clinical Network for Alberta Health Services.

Diego Villa, MD, MPH, FRCPC

Clinical Associate Professor,
Medical Oncologist,
British Columbia Cancer Agency and
University of British Columbia,
Vancouver, BC

Diego Villa is Clinical Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia and a medical oncologist at the BC Cancer – Vancouver Cancer Centre.  He is involved in the care of patients with lymphoid malignancies and breast cancer.  His research interests include the management of transformed indolent lymphomas, primary and secondary CNS lymphomas, mantle cell lymphoma, and the role of PET/CT in lymphoid malignancies.